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Recently I took some time off to take care of my wife, who had open-heart surgery to replace an aortic valve with a mechanical one. The mechanical valve is what the doc’s label as an “Iron Maiden.” I seriously can’t make that up! Iron Maiden is now a part of my wife.
I also found that actor Bill Paxton had the same surgery as did Janice… Sadly, he didn’t make it. You see the surgery, in a nutshell, is known to have its complications. Calcium builds up in the heart valves if you don’t take care of yourself and if the calcium breaks, it can travel to your brain causing a stroke. This is what happened to Paxton. The doc who operated on Janice eve told me that found calcium buildup in her valves. The good news, they were able to get it out before the installation of the valve. But what if the doc hadn’t noticed the calcium buildup and the same implications happened? I would be without my wife.
I’ve always said to Janice that “It took me 30 years to find you.” Of course, that would be practically impossible but it always felt like I spent my entire life looking for that one person. Janice would always respond back in
her snarky yet cute tone, “it took me even longer.”
This experience as a whole has opened my eyes for the better. I used to be very negative and pessimistic. But when you’re sitting in a small hospital room watching the woman you have loved for almost a decade recover from life-saving surgery it makes you appreciate the finer things in life. I have family members who brag about their material possessions and tell the world that they’re “thankful for their iPad.” In a matter of fact when my grandfather died, I had a cousin brag about the car he bought her while speaking during the viewing… I never once asked my grandfather for anything and bought my own car with my own money. For me, I’m just happy I have my wife and my sanity and my education.
In the end, I used to take things for granted and was pretty negative. Now, I am trying to stay positive and appreciate the bigger picture in life by not sweating over the little things.